Around late 1979 or so I moved to Sausalito,California.I was about 27 years old.I had already owned my 1st recording studio in Indiana by then and had recorded some songs I had written.So armed with those songs I drove my Chevy van out there and was offered a place in the artist community there at the boat docks at Sausalito.So I sold my van and bought a 35' houseboat and lived there.I got to know many of the San Fransisco Bay area musicians including Alex Call,who wrote,'Jenny Jenny' (867-5309).Alex and I did some studio work together.I also sat in with the 'Eddie Money' band for a short while.And while I was with them Dave Luark,their lead guitar player,taught me a valuable lesson.He said to never brag about my music and what I do.To let my music do the talking for me.And after all these years he has been proven right.Because I hear guys all the time bragging about how great they are or who they know,etc. and then when they play they sound like crap!As a matter of fact I just started mentioning to a few people about my Sausalito years a few months ago.My next door neighbor of 10 years just found out 6 months ago that I'm a musician.And I talk to him about 3 days a week.People in my community that I see daily have no clue what I do.But if someone asks what I do I say I'm a songwriter and leave it at that.I have never played at a party once.I just want to be an artist and make good music. While in Sausalito Marty Balin of Jefferson Airplane asked me to work on his new solo album since he had just left the band.To make some extra money I was hired by Stewart Brand (the founder of Whole Earth Catalog and Earth Day) to work on his tug boat,the Mirene, as a finish carpenter.I was to strip and varnish the inside cabin.On the left here you will see that finished cabin and the table he bought and placed there.It is the table that Otis Redding wrote 'Sitting on the Dock of the Bay' song on.Otis Redding wrote that song there in 1968 at those very docks in Sausalito about those docks which I was living at in 1979. Click the picture for lots more info!
My Teen Years
After I ran away from home at 16 I put on a back pack and hiked around the US, Mexico and Canada until I was 18.I lived in a abusive home and wrote about this and my leaving in the song 'This House'. Those years set off the wanderlust bug in me that has lasted to this day.Since my teenage years I have never been without a back pack or a guitar.Even if I am just going to the grocery store I just feel comfortable with my big pack along to put groceries into rather than a bunch of plastic bags.I think of those years often and how they formed me.I became a lot more self sufficient because of those times.And that's where I first learned how to read people.And as a songwriter it's your very first job.Reading people.But above all.Learning how to read yourself.
What's going on now?
I spend most of my day in the recording studio working on new music.I do things with friends when I find the time.I feel the need to save for a vintage Volkswagen Bus and convert it into a camper.I use to own one on Maui and the Big Island and I loved it.
The most relaxing thing for me is snorkeling and spearfishing for 'Tako' octopus.I can usually catch 4 a day.I have probably been to every campground on every island.I love the outdoors.I'm a big flower smeller.If I walk by it.I smell it.That goes for about anything.I have collected memories from around the world through out my lifetime just by sniffing my surroundings and holding on to them for later recall when I sense that smell again.I have always done this with purpose.With just one smell I'm back on Whidbey Island in Washington State by a creek with snow falling watching a deer.Or back in Indiana at my log cabin that I am building.With the smell of that Ponderosa Pine while I hear the owl off in the distance.
I also walk 4 days a week to Makaha Beach and exercise there.I love to garden too.I was elected the President of the Waikiki Garden Club in 1999.And because of my efforts over the next 2 years as their President we dramatically cleaned up the garden which was an eyesore and built up the treasury which had no money at the time and started abiding by county regulations which no one was.Because of this Mayor Jeremy Harris appointed me as one of the 10 members on his Parks Dept. staff to run all of the garden clubs in the State on all the islands which had 1,500 members.
I do love to cook.I cook all my own meals with nothing from a box or a can.All fresh.I once owned a fine southern restaurant in White Springs,Florida called 'The Telford House'. I was also the head chef.
And of course nothing is more important or relaxing to me than songwriting.I have done it since the age of 18.I started playing guitar at 11. I come into my recording studio every single day at about 7 am and work until about 5 pm.I try to complete a new song about every 3 weeks or so.Complete with a full production.I play all of the instruments and vocals and some will be posted here on my website.Of course I have other duties like teaching guitar, etc. that take up my time.